KANSAS CITY, Mo. — With only a couple of weeks until Christmas, we’re fast approaching what is historically the busiest week of the year for post offices across the country.

In the past several years, the United States Postal Service has made a herculean effort to improve its shipping, especially during the holiday season. 

Inside Kansas City’s busy Post Office Distribution Center, workers are processing more packages than ever. A $40 billion plan is making the complicated process easier.

In 2021, the United States Post Office unveiled its 10-year “Delivering for America” plan designed to improve its shipping outcomes. In 2022, the USPS converted 100,000 part-time employees to full-time positions and hired 28,000 seasonal employees and one thousand new truck drivers.

Part of the $40 billion plan involved purchasing 249 new package sorting machines for facilities across the country, including the one in Kansas City.

Still, the Postal Service urges you to get your packages in the mail as soon as possible. Here are some of the deadlines for holiday shipping:

  • Dec. 17: Ground service and first-class mail service
  • Dec. 19: Priority mail service
  • Dec. 23 Priority Mail Express

The machines are designed to make the flow of packages coming into and going out of processing facilities more efficient. They process up to 60 million packages per day. 

“What’s exciting about those is some of those are almost self-automated. You set the barcode straight up, and the machine reads the barcode and the package goes on a conveyor belt onto different destinations,” USPS’ regional communications specialist Mark Inglett said.

“It’s easy to run, and we have folks working to learn the process. It allows them to grow in the Postal Service. In the meantime, that mail is sorted that much faster. You figure 249 machines throughout the country. that’s a lot of processing machines.”

In the last year, this new technology is designed to do one thing: get packages to and from your homes and businesses more quickly during the holiday season. 

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